Pandan-flavored Gelatin Salad with Young Coconut Strips

Buko Pandan is that unusual green gelatin dessert salad with coconut(buko) strips, in a semi-sweet, rich cream.

Just like the Filipino Fruit Salad, this, too, is quite simple to make.

The gelatin is first cooked infused with the flavor of the pandan leaf, cooled and cut in cubes.

Fresh Buko strips from a young coconut is then added, then a mixture of thick cream and some condensed milk to sweeten a bit completes this dessert treat.

Now, let's go with the optional ingredients that you could find in different versions of the buko pandan.

  • Small sago or tapioca pearls - cooked, either sweetened or unsweetened.

  • Kaong - pre-cooked and sweetened, or use the bottled preserves but don't add the sweet syrup.

  • Nata de Coco - pre-cooked and sweetened, or use the bottled preserves but discard the sweet syrup.

  • Ice cream topping : top your individually glass-portioned buco pandan with a scoop of either macapuno or vanilla ice cream for a more rich, creamy consistency.


  • Green Agar-agar (gelatin) stick
  • Pandan leaf

  • Young Coconut
  • Small Tapioca Pearls(optional)
  • Heavy Cream or Nestle Cream
  • Condensed Milk


  • Sugar


  • 1 stick Green Agar-agar (gelatin) stick
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 cup Sugar
  • 1 Pandan leaf

  • 2 cups Young Coconut, in long shreds or cut in strips
  • 1 cup Small Tapioca Pearls, cooked as below(optional)
  • 3/4 cup Heavy Cream or Nestle Cream
  • 3/4 cup Condensed Milk


COOKING TIME : 30 minutes

1Soak the agar-agar in water, set aside for 30 minutes.

2Boil for 10 minutes or until the agar-agar is fully dissolved, then add the sugar.

3Set on a pan to cool, refrigerate, then cut in cubes.

4In a separate pan with hot boiling water, put the small tapioca pearls for 10 to 15 minutes until translucent. Strain, and set aside to cool.

5To put together, mix together the heavy cream and condensed milk, add the shredded young coconut and tapioca pearls, then add the gelatin last.

6Try not to mix too much after you put in the gelatin so the sauce will not turn too green.


  • When making the gelatin using agar-agar, do not add sugar until the agar-agar is fully dissolved, otherwise your gelatin will not come out smooth.

  • Refrigerate the uncut gelatin to cool completely before cutting in cubes so it doesn't become watery, and so the green color will not bleed onto your cream too much.

  • I use the pandan on the gelatin rather than on the cream sauce because I prefer a subtle, instead of overpowering taste and aroma of pandan, but do as you prefer.

  • If using pandan food flavoring drops, start with just a couple drops and try not to overdo it. I had tasted buko pandan that's seemed flavored with perfume -- not good.

  • Do not soak the small tapioca pearls. Drop them in boiling water so they don't disintegrate and turn mushy. Store in refrigerator soaked in water so they don't stick together.

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